I have been so intrigued with the unique flavor of Juniper, so I created this amazing and simple juniper berry ice cream recipe perfect for summer.
The history of Juniper has attained a place in the making of a very famous spirit. The name of this spirit has been copied from the Dutch word Jenever, which is Juniper translated. It eventually gained it’s shortened name of Gin. It is said that the Dutch invented this Juniper infused drink and when the English got a hold of this drink they brought it in to its popularity. Even today Gin is one of the most popular spirits in the world.
Juniper has had many uses before it became a main ingredient in Gin. Early folk medicine, food, and spell casting involved juniper.
Juniper has a very aromatic and strong scent. Many believed it could cast evil spirits and disease away. Some practices even had the herb planted outside their front door in order to keep witches out. There is a myth that if a witch came to your house she would not be able to pass the plant until correctly counting the needles of each branch on the plant. Many now plant them in their landscape, without knowing this herbs repelling properties.
With the American Indians juniper was used as a cleansing and reliever of pain. They used it for arthritis, to keep away infection, and even cure various wounds. In today’s world many still use juniper to relieve arthritis pain. If you use a few leaves in a warm bath, it will soothe your muscles. Over the years it has known to help with digestion and kidney health.
Juniper berries are also used in many dishes, because of it’s delectable flavor. Used in everything from the main course to the dessert- for flavor. The combination with other herbs makes it great for soups and sauces. I have decided to go with something a little unique for the recipe below.
Juniper Berry Ice Cream
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 1 tbs. Juniper berries, slightly crushed
- 2 cups green seedless grapes
- 1 cup small-diced cucumber
- Heat the sugar, salt and water in a pot on a stove.
- Once the sugar is dissolved, add the juniper berries, simmer for 2 minutes.
- Put the grapes into a blender until smoothie consistency.
- Cool the sugar liquid.
- Add grapes and cucumber to liquid.
- Pour into mold.
- Freeze ( depending on the size of your mold this could take 4-24 hours.)